In The News
Tanya Blackmon, executive vice president and chief diversity, inclusion and equity officer for Novant Health, has been named 2021 BusinessWoman of the Year by Queens University. Previous Charlotte BusinessWoman of the Year winners include IWF members Dena Diorio, Theresa Drew, Carol Lovin and Andrea Smith. Click here to read more about Tanya.
Vi Lyles, Mayor of Charlotte, announced a $250 million initiative to promote racial equity in the Queen City. The public-private initiative, led and conceived by Lyles, has already raised $196 million in private donations, public dollars and private equity/debt. Click here to read more.
Andrea Smith's career and future plans were highlighted in October's American Banker Magazine's Most Powerful Women in Banking section. Click here to read more (you can create a guest account). .
Sharon Gaber, PhD, Chancellor of the University of North Carolina Charlotte and Jennifer Appleby, CEO of Wray Ward were honored at the 2021 Charlotte Business Journal's Most Admired CEO Awards at the Marriott Charlotte on November 18th.
Andrea Smith, announces her retirement and Cathy Bessant moves to a new role as part of a Bank of America reshuffle. Andrea will retire from her role as chief administrative officer at the end of 2021 after 34 years with Bank of America. She plans to set up and chair a new Bank of America Alumni Council "focused on connecting and engaging retirees and former employees of the company as clients, advocates, and community leaders".
Kandi Deitemeyer, president of Central Piedmont Community College, joined the EDNC podcast to reflect on the past 18 months and talk about leading a community college during a pandemic and cyberattack. She also discussed what it was like serving as president of the North Carolina Association of Community College Presidents this past year. Click here to read more.
Cheryl Richards, President of Johnson & Wales Charlotte campus since June 2020, has been named CEO of Catapult, a North Carolina statewide employer's organization. She'll take over leadership at Catapult effective Oct. 18, operating out of the Charlotte office.
Mary Winston, President and CEO of WinsCo Enterprises in Charlotte, NC has been elected to the board of directors for TD Bank. Winston currently serves on the boards of several public companies, including Acuity Brands Inc. , Bed Bath & Beyond Inc.
Joyce Russell, President of the Adecco Group US Foundation, has been named to the board of directors of Celsius Holdings Inc. , maker of the fitness drink, CELSIUS. Click here to read more.
Joan F Lorden, UNC Charlotte's provost and vice chancellor, will be stepping down at the end of the 2021-22 academic year. Lorden served for 18 years under three chancellors. She is the longest-serving provost in the UNC System.
Susan King, Dean of the UNC Hussman School of Journalism and Media in Chapel Hill, NC, announced she will be stepping down at the end of the year after a decade of service to the university. She will return, after a customary leave of absence, as a tenured professor. Click here to read more.
Cathy Bessant, formerly the chief technology and operations officer for Bank of America for over 12 years, has been named the Vice Chair of Global Strategy, joining the top leadership ranks at the Bank. Click here to read more. .
Mae Douglas is now the lead volunteer for BIG (Black Investments in Greensboro) Equity Fund. After a successful career in corporate America, Mae returned to Greensboro to make a difference. "When I returned to Greensboro, it was very important to me to ensure that other Black boys and girls have as many opportunities as I did," she told WGHP Fox8.
As a member of the Board of the Institute for Fiduciary Standards, Deborah Bosley was interviewed by WealthManagement for an article about REG BI, a new requirement for Investment Brokers and Advisors. She also was interviewed for an article titled Women Leading the Finance Industry in ThriveGlobal where she discussed her focus on clear and credible financial content and women's abilities to communicate well. She is also the first Board Chair for the new Charlotte Center for the Humanities and Civic Imagination.
IWF Members Carol Spalding, Sharon Gaber and Joan Lorden join forces to announce a guaranteed admission partnership between Rowan Cabarrus Community College and UNC Charlotte.
Susan King says the controversy over Nikole Hannah-Jones tenure was upsetting but this is an opportunity to have frank conversation. King is focused on rebuilding trust with the students and staff. She calls Hannah-Jones a "once in a generation" journalist.
Carol Hardison, CEO of Crisis Assistance Ministry, speaks out about the eviction moratorium and the amount of rental assistance needed today. "Pre-pandemic, you wouldn't have been able to get more than a month or two behind without the landlord completely pad-locking you out," Hardison said. "Now we're sometimes paying two, three and four, five months worth of rent to help a person.
Maryann Bruce was recently interviewed for a podcast by Emmy award-winning TV reporter, Kristi Piehl, for FLIP YOUR SCRIPT. Known as the "Diva of Disaster," Maryann Bruce has earned her nickname. From a tsunami to a plane crash to avalanches and earthquakes, Bruce has experienced everyone's worst nightmares and has lived to tell the tales.
Maryann Bruce joined an impressive group of experienced CEOs and corporate board members from some of the largest publicly traded companies across all industries to share their expertise and advice on diversifying corporate boards. Their candid insights around challenges and potential solutions for diversity are captured in "Bold Leaders, Actionable Solutions," a webinar series and a publicly released white paper. The work, led by the Ellig Group and SHRM, was summarized in this brief video.
Tanya Stewart Blackmon, executive vice president and chief diversity and inclusion officer at Novant Health, has been named Charlotte Woman of the Year. Selected by a committee of past winners, Blackmon was recognized for her extraordinary leadership and community service throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Click here to read more.
Raleigh, NC marketing and branding agency Walk West has named Karen Albritton its chief executive officer, effective June 1, 2021. "Agility informed by data is how brands thrive today. Clients want a creative partner that can execute quickly, but with certainty and humanity, and that's Walk West," said Albritton.
Maryann Bruce, president of Turnberry Advisory Group and Amalgamated Bank board member, spoke to young women who are planning to lead from the C-Suite on the "Preparing for the Possibility" Zoomcast with ABC to CEO Founder Sharon Fiehler. Maryann shared invaluable lessons and insights about executive leadership and board experience. ABC to CEO is a non-profit organization for girls and young women to guide them to be future C-Suite leaders.
Dena Diorio and Cathy Bessant are leading an effort to eradicate homelessness and expand low-income housing in Charlotte. A coalition of city, county, nonprofit and business leaders launched the effort to develop a five-year strategic plan to eradicate homelessness and expand low-income housing in Charlotte. The idea is to draft specific plans and identify funding by this fall, according to Dena Diorio, Mecklenburg County Manager.
Suzanne Fetscher, founding president and CEO Emerita of McColl Center for Art + Innovation, calls for the creation of a Charlotte-Mecklenburg Cultural Commission that serves city and county residents. A Cultural Commission, Fetscher wrote in the Charlotte Observer, would invest in emerging organizations and creative agencies to add jobs and generate animated and vibrant neighborhoods throughout the city. Click here to read more.
Theresa Drew, as board chair of YMCA of Greater Charlotte, responded to the surprise gift of $18 million from MacKenzie Scott, the philanthropist ex-wife of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. With the gift, the Y will be able to move forward with the Y's health equity initiatives to address issues surrounding access in underserved communities. Plans include increasing access to healthy food and nutrition education, empowering families and individuals to eat healthy, increasing access to care and mental health services, and expanding chronic disease prevention services.
Barbara Richter, Executive Director of GreenHill Center for NC Art, is bringing kids back together this summer in Greensboro at the Greenhill Center for North Carolina Art, more than a year after the COVID-19 pandemic forced all programs online. "We'll welcome kids back into our studios and galleries in smaller groups, with a maximum capacity of 10," she said. "Easing back into summer camps also means we're taking special precautions to assure the safety of campers and staff, including more time outdoors, dedicated art materials and tools for each camper, social distancing, and mask requirements.
Vi Lyles, Mayor of Charlotte, is leading a first-in-the-nation clean energy effort with the Charlotte Area Transit System (CATS) to keep the city on target to meet its ambitious climate action goals. CATS transit buses will become all-electric, supported by a unique energy modeling and financing partnership with Duke Energy. A pilot program to test 18 battery-electric buses of varying manufacturers was approved as a first step to finding the most suitable vehicle for the city's full transition to battery-electric buses.
Dena Diorio, Mecklenburg County Manager, was named Charlotte Businesswoman of the Year for 2020 by Queen's University. The university has recognized female leaders who make significant contributions to the business community in Charlotte for 30 years. Diorio was selected based on her leadership during the pandemic.
Vi Lyles, mayor of Charlotte, and Tepper Sports & Entertainment President Tom Glick spoke with Axios Local in a virtual event on the future of sports in the Queen City and adapting to the pandemic. Mayor Lyles discussed how the city has invested in the entertainment industry, as well as how sports teams and venues have played an important role in the COVID-19 vaccine rollout. Watch the conversation here.
Barbara Richter, executive director of the GreenHill Center for North Carolina Art, an organization dedicated exclusively to presenting and promoting the contemporary visual art and artists of NC, announced a new collaboration between artists and the public "SHIFT HAPPENS". The exhibition begins with a series of installations by Knightdale artist, Heather Gordon. Greenhill expects to see new works of art created by the public as they take in and respond to her work.
Andrea Smith, Bank of America's Chief Administrative Officer speaks out about the company's presenting partnership at the 2021 Augusta National Women's Amateur. The event was canceled last year due to the pandemic. "Our history is one of advancing women's economic opportunity and empowerment and that's exactly what we saw in the opportunity with the Augusta National Women's Amateur," she told Forbes.
Dr Kandi Deitemeyer, president of Central Piedmont Community College, gave a report to the State Board of Community Colleges earlier this month on behalf of the Presidents' Association outlining the need for in-person learning for summer and fall terms. "Many of our students need to be on campus," she said. "They need to be in areas where they're supported outside of the classroom.
Cathy Bessant and Sharon Decker, both past recipients of the Charlotte Business Journal's Lifetime Achievement Award, were featured in a recent CBJ edition.